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Opinions of Friday, 17 June 2016

Columnist: Prof. Gabriel Dwomoh

Selling police recruitment application vouchers; is it worth it?

Prof. Gabriel Dwomoh Prof. Gabriel Dwomoh

It is the aim of every institution to have the full complement stock of human resource both in qualitative and quantitative terms to achieve its short and long-term objectives. It is every organisations human capital that makes it distinct from its competitors in terms of how services are rendered, new ideas developed and eventually vision realised. Having the required stock of manpower goes with cost as the cost of recruitment and selection cannot be ignored.

The question that needs to be asked and answers need to be provided is who should be responsible for this cost. The Ghana Police Service of late has received some criticisms with regard to the selling of application vouchers which one must obtain before completing application forms to be considered for enlistment in the service.

Per the information obtained from citifmonline on Friday, 13th May 2016, the Ghana Commercial Bank sold over 17, 000 Police recruitment vouchers at GHc100 three days after it began the process. Looking at this, one may ask the main purpose of filling vacancies in the Police Service. Is it to increase internally generated funds (IGF) or to get the full complement of manpower the service needs.

One of the limitations of selling the application vouchers which is linked to the recruitment forms is that, will the service get the larger pool from which prospective applicants can be selected from? What about those who cannot afford the cost of this application vouchers? Are they not part of the pool (external) which the service is targeting?

If organisations such as the service is to boost of having a great deal of intangible assets, opportunities should be extended to all who have the requisite skills, knowledge and ability to be given the chance to be enlisted in the service without any restriction.

While I agree that restriction on prospective applicants during the recruitment and selection process is vital for the service to get the required manpower it needs, the restriction should have a link to what will make the newly recruits excellent performers when employed.

Per the specification of the advertisement for new recruits in the service, the restriction of age, academic qualification, nationality and height in respect of 1.73 meters for male and 1.63 meters for a female is vital looking at the work of the service.

When it comes to restriction on ability to have GHc100 for application vouchers before you can be involved in the service recruitment and selection process, is it a good indicator to predict the output of the prospective applicant when given the chance to be in the service? Recruitment and selection cost should be borne by the service and it should not be transferred to the potential applicants else the purpose of getting talented manpower for the service will be defeated.

For countries such as Britain, Scotland and Republic of Ireland, recruitment into the service is not linked to prospective applicants’ ability to purchase forms as these are free on the service website. The only financial restriction imposed on potential applicants into the service is their financial credibility.

That is, if potential applicants are into too much debt, they will be sceptical to bribery and corruption. Such restriction in the recruitment and selection process is a good indicator to predict the performance of applicants when given the chance to be employed into the service.

While I do not agree with the Ghana Police Service with regard to the selling of application vouchers since it is not a good restriction to prevent one to be in the service, there is also the need for the government to increase its assistance to the service so that the service can adequately finance its activities.

The UK model can be looked at, where a certain percentage of council tax paid by citizens goes to the service as well as the government yearly budgetary allocation. In my opinion, we should not create the environment for employers to abuse the recruitment and selection process by generating income out of it.

Prof. Gabriel Dwomoh

Director – Institute of Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development

Kumasi Polytechnic
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